Uncharted Waters, normally released as Daikoukai Jidai (大航海時代?), is a popular Japanese video game series produced by Koei under its "Rekoeition" brand.
It is a simulation and role-playing video game series dealing with sailing and trading, themed around the Age of Discovery. In the games, the player takes up the role of a captain (or commodore in some translations) and manages a seagoing fleet to participate in trades, privateering, treasure hunting, exploration, and plain piracy. Even though the series is largely open-ended, there is still a loose plot which requires the player to follow certain paths, and deviating from these paths may stall the progress of the story.
In East Asia, the series has a large cult following, but it has not received much recognition outside the region. However, it has been compared to the earlier Sid Meier's Pirates! in gameplay and theme.
In the first game of the series, the player assumes the role of Leon Franco, the young, ambitious son of a noble family fallen on hard times in Portugal. The goal of the game is to restore the family's former glory and achieve Leon's dreams. Only three nations are represented, Portugal, Spain and the Ottoman Empire, although there are many neutral ports around the world that the player can "invest" in and thus make part of Portugal's sphere of influence. This, as well as discovering ports and defeating other merchants and pirates in sea battles, increases Leon's fame. With increased fame, Leon can complete tasks for the King of Portugal and gain higher titles of nobility.
The story is set in the early 16th century. It was released on MSX and NES in 1991, and Sega Mega Drive/Genesis and SNES in 1992; the SNES version was originally titled Super Daikoukai Jidai in Japan, as with many SNES ports of Koei games. The English versions were also released in the same years respectively. The game was ported to PC and Macintosh, as well.